Monday, August 08, 2005

A change of pace

I find that the more I write in this blog, the less I write creatively--which is really what I'd rather focus my efforts on. So, for the time being at least, I'll post little updates of what I'm up to, but the bulk of the text will be things I've found interesting in reading (online or otherwise). If that makes sense.

So, me: A few days ago I visited Mass MoCA (to see the Leipzig artists and Cai Guo-Qiang's work) and Dia:Beacon (the highlight being a big Warhol exhibit, among other things). I also stopped in briefly at Williams, Bard, and Vassar colleges--the first two of which I liked enormously, the last of which I didn't like at all. Yesterday evening we had another 826 meeting, this time led by 826 National's Nineve Calegari. I'm reading Hermann Hesse's Demian and listening to Tori Amos almost exclusively. I've been drinking less coffee and more milk. And I've been painting, writing letters, etc. etc.

I've also been reading more of Glenn McDonald's articles online, which brings me to a couple snippets from him--the first, I've posted here before; the second, for contrast:
Here are some good things in the world that humans are responsible for: the way tapioca pearls pop out of the big plastic bubble-tea straws into your mouth in little clusters of three or four; the red and blue lights on Volkswagen dashboards; Ryo's mother's oden bar in Princess Nine and the bridge in Love Hina; Emmitt Smith setting the rushing record; custom Scrabble boards; Thanksgiving; politeness; wood-burning stoves; down comforters and snooze buttons; frailty, courage and CAT scans; the way paper folds; mail rules; bow-ties you tie yourself and shoes you don't; the way all suitcases come with wheels and those telescoping handles now; all the health food you don't eat; Natural Capitalism and Midnight in the Garden of Evel Knievel; the Criterion Collection and the Viking Portable Library; "Down in the Tube Station at Midnight" and "The Ghost at Number One"; Google and eBay and the page at that tells you how much it costs to mail $17 in cash to Kyoto; the way people venture out of their homes to attempt something they would like to see done; the way somebody looks at you in between the moment in which they realize that you're no longer a stranger and the moment in which they decide whether that's an improvement or not. The kick pulse in Chitose Hajime's "Hummingbird" and the snare twang in Tori's "Taxi Ride".
And then, in a different article, a digression off a different record:
Here are some gratuitous examples of wearyingly banal minor evil: people who pull out quickly after an ambulance goes by and try to get past the cars that had pulled over ahead of them; advertisements that cite "your favorite" something, particularly with a classifier that's unrealistically generic or specific, like "now offering your favorite beverages", or "all your favorite hypoallergenic air-mattress cleansers"; the articles written at midday, every day, attempting to ascribe significance to the morning's stochastic stock-market fluctuations; bureaus or corporations that attempt to promulgate their own nicknames, like the Department of Public Works stenciling "The Works" on all their trucks, or Kentucky Fried Chicken trying to go by "KFC"; the fact that no airline has thought to mount the seats in their planes on tracks, so that in a quarter-full flight they could slide all the unused ones to the ends of the sections and give the remaining passengers humane legroom; cropped movies of any kind, but most especially cell animation, where the cropping is cutting out details at the edges of the frame that some person had to physically draw there; political parties; cable-television fees; talk radio; the insane American notion that people only need ten or fifteen days off from work in a whole year.
I couldn't agree more. (Not only are these very true, but they also appeal to my list-making sensibilities.) That's all. Back to Emil Sinclair!


Anonymous Ian said...

Wow, Glenn McDonald sounds like quite a genius. I'll look into more of his writing. I think I like his dislikes more than his likes though. That is to say I dislike those as well, not that I like those dislikes.

Like like like.

Also, I'm actually glad you're deciding to focus on creative writing. I hope you share the fruits of this venture. I've seen very little of creative writing and I'd love to see more.

11:13 PM  
Blogger T.C. said...

I like totally like him too, man.

I'll probably share some of what I write...eventually. It's a pretty personal and potentially embarrassing thing, so...we'll see. Sometime, I'm sure.

12:44 AM  
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